Currently in the UK just 22% of small and medium sized businesses are majority women-owned. Women continue to encounter barriers that prevent them from moving into business ownership and impede their ability to grow their businesses. Many of the barriers they face are common challenges faced by all small business owners. Recent research has found the currently 2.7 million women in the UK want to start a business but have been put off by persistent barriers. Small firms already make a huge contribution to our economy; if we were to harness the still largely untapped potential of women entrepreneurship, it could lead to additional jobs, economic growth and a more diverse and representative small business community.
We want to help drive a cultural change towards diversity in business and see more women starting and growing their own businesses. More needs to be done to really empower women. Flexible and affordable training should be provided, particular on digital and marketing skills. Better advice and mentoring should be provided and Maternity Allowance for the self-employed should be brought in line with Statutory Maternity Pay.